STEM Earth Science Study Guide
Rocks Ch 2
Define igneous, metamorphic, and sedimentary rocks.
How are different types of rocks formed?
Where did the igneous rock came from?
Describe the rock cycle?
It is possible for an igneous rock to become a sedimentary rock by the fact that igneous rock can
be weathered forming sediment for sedimentary rocks.
How does the Earth processes (erosion, mountain building, and glacier movement) are used used
to tell the geologic history of the earth?
layers of rock
Define Erosion.
What are the processes that can shape landforms.
Wind, water and erosion
Fossils Ch 3
Define relative dating
Describe how fossils provide important evidence of how life and environmental conditions have
A fossil of a sea animal was found on top of a mountain. What can a scientist conclude about the
history of that mountain?
A sea once covered the area.
how rocks and fossils are used to understand the age and geological history of the earth
(timelines and relative dating, rock layers)
As a scientist was hiking up a mountain, she found fossils of seashells in some of the rocks. The
rocks were formed in an ocean and later uplifted when the mountain was formed.
Describe the geological time scale using the chart below.
life on Earth has changed from primitive organisms to more complex organisms
Plate Tectonics
How do scientist know that the continents were at one time joined together and then moved
Plate tectonic theory and example can be Fossils of the fern Glossopteris have been found in
Africa, Australia, Antarctica, and South America. scientists explain this observation through the
How are the earthquake formed?
the movement of tectonic plates, occurs when pressure caused by colliding lithospheric plates
gets extreme and then suddenly releases
What is the primary cause of continental drift, earthquakes, and volcanic eruptions?
The primary cause of continental drift, earthquakes, and volcanic eruptions is convection
currents beneath Earth’s crust
What are the layers of the earth?
What layer of the Earth is divided into pieces called tectonic plates?
Lithosphere (outermost)
Define Plate Tectonics
How does the lithospheric plates move in centimeters each year?
What is the difference between Earth’s crust and Earth’s core?
Earth’s core is believed to be . more dense, hotter, and composed of more iron
Describe layers of the Earth as a lithosphere (crust and upper mantle), convecting mantle, and
dense metallic core.
What layer of the Earth is affected by an Earthquake?
Compass & Earth’s Magnetic Field
How does a compass work using the magnetic field of the Earth?
How is the direction of the compass needle similar to the direction of the Earth’s magnetic
How is a compass used for navigation on land and sea?
Compare different soil samples such as sand, silt, and clay based on their particle size and
Describe how soil is a mixture. What is the soil made up of?
weather eroded rock and decomposed organic material.
(a) weathered eroded rock
(b) nitrous oxide
(c) decomposed organic material
How are the soils formed?
weathering and growing plant roots
What are the minerals in soils made up of?
many tiny pieces of eroded rock,